Friday, May 2, 2014

May 2nd, 2014 What A Relief

May 2nd, 2014 What A Relief

The radio alarm clock hit 4:30am and blasted Billy Joel throughout my apartment so loud, I can't imagine the neighbors didn't hear. I've asked the two likeliest recipients of this early morning concert if they ever hear anything and they say they haven't heard a thing. Turning the volume level "all the way to 11" has been a regular thing for me my entire life.  And when my body stops fighting the rest and finally goes deep, I need all the decibels I can get to wake. I've slept through an hour of music several times before my alarm clock gives up on me, shutting itself off.  This morning?  I opened my eyes and listened to Billy play and sing so perfectly. Like a scientist assessing results of an experiment, I stayed still, eyes open staring at the wall and pondering the idea of adding learning to play the piano to my list of dreams. That's good because my first thought wasn't, oh my goodness, Lord help me make it through first thought was who teaches piano around here and how much does it cost?  

I jumped up, turned down the volume and looked in the mirror.  I had the new mask on tight, real tight and the proof was in the red markings on the bridge of my nose and forehead.  My eyes felt better, my head not bad and my body didn't feel horrible at all. All of these positives were proof that this new mask made a difference.  It wasn't easy to get comfortable enough to go to sleep, but when I did, I did sleep. I felt rested. Adjusting to this new full face mask is kind of like trying to go to sleep while opening your mouth directly in front of a high powered fan.  If we could get a video camera inside the mask, I'm sure it would be hilarious to watch.  Eventually I fell into the rhythm of the assisted breathing and slept better than I have in a long while. Of course the more solid proof would be found in how I felt throughout the day.

I had a full day, without a split shift--no nap, not a wink and I was a production machine. A colleague went home early, taking a half day vacation, so I took care of what needed to be done.  And I did it without any trouble, not a bit. This was so good.  I'm so happy, finally--some relief!!

I packed breakfast, fresh fruit snacks and lunch supplies this morning.  Making sure I'm prepared makes keeping the budget in tact much easier.  When lunch rolled around, I was offered a Subway sandwich instead of my planned food and it worked well.  I powered through after lunch, getting more done and still feeling good as I pushed into about an hour of overtime.  My plan wasn't a late afternoon nap.  My plan was to go clothes shopping.  And that sucked.

As much as I hate to spend money on bigger clothes, it's a must. Our expected high on Tuesday is 100 degrees Fahrenheit, so I can't keep wearing a cold weather getup.  I have an entire closet full of small clothes just waiting for their triumphant return.  But this takes time and I'll be patient.  I'm headed back into that closet someday in the not too distant future.  It's okay.  And as I looked around for clothes in this temporarily bigger size, I had to keep reminding myself that I'm headed in the right direction. I'm making a wonderful comeback and this time with all the lessons learned along the way.  The more I asserted the positive, the more clothes I found that didn't fit.  It was like a tug of war between my positive thoughts and the reality of where I am.  And where I was, was the wrong store, obviously.

I remember opening an email from a Big and Tall store one time, shortly after hitting 230 pounds and replying to the email with "please take me off your list, I've lost 275 pounds and I no longer need your clothing."  A simple "take me off your list" would have worked, but I was proud and I wanted them to know exactly why I wouldn't be needing their insanely overpriced clothing.  Now I'm faced with the expensive task of heading to the Big and Tall store once again after I swore I'd never step foot in one again. And that's okay.  It's gotta be okay.  I need clothing. As much as it hurts to walk back in there and as much as my natural inclination is to beat myself up senselessly for it, I must let those emotions go and look at the other side of this deal.

I'm very lucky.  I'm very blessed.  And I have a very long gratitude list.  I've still kept off over 100 pounds of what I initially lost, so its not as unfortunate as it could have been. And I'm finally finding what certainly seems to be a solution to my sleep crisis. Things are looking up!! I'm writing everyday, I'm tracking my food and maintaining a calorie budget too.  I'm feeling like I've returned to a place mentally, emotionally and spiritually where I'm confident I'm headed in the direction I need.  And I'm the 42 year old grandfather of the cutest little 10 month old on the planet. God willing, I've got a whole lot of good life ahead of me. Buying a few clothing items to get me through as I lose more weight really isn't anything to be down about at all.  I'm grateful I have the opportunity to learn and grow from here.

After a good dinner and a wonderful almost two mile walk, I'm ready to hit the pillow.  And I'm looking forward to the experience as I rediscover better rest. My calorie budget is a little bit under target and that's okay tonight.

You're invited to take a peek at my food pictures on Twitter: @SeanAAnderson
And you'll find my food and exercise diary logged on MyFitnessPal under the user name: SeanAAnderson

Thank you for reading,


  1. Keep up the positive thinking and so glad you got a good nights sleep.

  2. Your body has been through so much with months of sleep deprivation Sean. If you think one night made you feel better, then it will be life-changing for you after a month of sustained, quality sleep. I can't imagine how sweet your life will be 6 months from now with all that wonderful REM sleep, weight loss, and moving your body. I'm so happy for you! Shirley from TN


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